Robert Lewis Jones
Grant County Sheriff's Department
Tuesday, December 11, 1888

Age: 39
Served: 1 month
Badge #:
Panel 19W, Line 27 (2010)
Panel L6, Line 12 (2010)

Incident Details

Cause of Death:
Date/Time of Incident:
Sunday, December 9, 1888
09:00 pm
Incident to Death Duration:
2 days
Incident Location:
East County Road 100 South, Jerome
Incident County:
Incident Township:
Weapon Used:
.38-caliber handgun
Suspect Disposition:
Paroled in 1927
Burial Place:
Estates of Serenity, Marion

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   Sheriff Robert Jones died from gunshot wounds he suffered two days earlier while attempting to arrest an escapee from the Grant County Jail.

   The convicted horse thief had been charged with grand larceny in July 1888 and was sentenced to two years in prison. As he was waiting to be transferred to the Indiana State Prison North, he escaped on September 20 from the jail. The convict later returned to the county to court a young lady while staying with his father.

   Her family, who disapproved of their relationship, informed Sheriff Jones that the man would be visiting the home of her half sister that evening in Jerome, in Howard County. Arriving at the residence, a deputy remained at the front door as Sheriff Jones proceeded to the rear door and entered the premises.

   After both females denied the suspect was at the home, Sheriff Jones opened a door leading to a bedroom and found him hiding there. The suspect fired two shots from a revolver, seriously wounding Sheriff Jones in the left arm and abdomen.

   Sheriff Jones, who was unarmed, began striking the man with his billy club until the deputy gained entry through the front door, which had been barricaded with a bed and took him into custody. Sheriff Jones survived two days before he died from his wounds.

   The 22-year-old suspect was taken to the Indiana State Prison North in Michigan City to avoid being lynched by enraged citizens. He was sentenced to life in prison, escaped from confinement in April 1907 but was recaptured and later paroled in 1927.

   Sheriff Jones had served in office for less than four weeks of his two-year term. He was survived by his wife and two sons.

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